Fallbrook sheriff's deputies have reason to believe they interrupted a robbery attempt on the morning of March 19. They responded to a radio call of a suspicious white female wearing a wig near the Fallbrook Towne Center strip mall.
The 46-year-old woman was hiding her face while sitting in a truck between a 40-year-old man and a 26-year-old woman. A plain-clothes detective arrived first to watch what they were doing from the shopping center; four more deputies responded, and they made contact with the suspects.
"The wig looked somewhat like Marilyn Monroe's hair," said sergeant Amy Brown of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department. She added that it didn't match the paint-stained Dickies pants the woman was wearing or the baseball hat she wore over it.
The three people were unable to give a plausible explanation as to what they were doing when questioned. They told police they were in Fallbrook to clean a home. The wigged woman had a quantity of cocaine in her pants pocket and the younger woman had a bottle of Vicodin that was not her own. Each wore two sets of pants, a strategy often used by thieves to change their appearance after committing a crime, according to the sheriff's department press release.
The male suspect advised deputies he was on parole. They searched him and found shotgun shells in his pants pockets. A shotgun was lying on the floorboard of the truck along with gloves and ski masks. The suspects did not admit to any type of plan, but it appeared they were going to rob one of the stores in the shopping center.
The sheriff's department checked with other law-enforcement agencies, but no other crimes had been reported in other jurisdictions. The three suspects were booked into the Vista Detention Facility on drug and firearms possession charges and are scheduled to appear in court on March 23.